The royal family of Qatar is preparing to test the resolve of Manchester United owners the Glazers with a fresh £1.5 billion bid for the club, according to reports.
The Al Thani family had a £1 billion offer rejected earlier this month but, according to the Daily Mail, the Qataris are on the verge of making an improved bid.
The newspaper goes on to claim that the renewed offer is partly motivated by rivalry with the Abu Dhabi royal family, who have invested millions of pounds to transform United's arch-rivals Manchester City.
United strenuously deny that they have received any bid from Qatar Holdings, which identifies ways to invest the country's oil billions. But a source close to the Al Thani family indicated the offer could be made privately, or through another investment company.
While Qatar's preference is a lone bid, they are also considering going into partnership with the Red Knights, a group of wealthy United fans who want to wrestle control of the club from the Glazers and have the backing of the fans.